MDD2PDM1-Personal Development

Module Provider: Leadership, Organisations and Behaviour
Number of credits: 0 [0 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Autumn / Summer term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Current from: 2021/2

Module Convenor: Dr Chris Dalton

Type of module:

Summary module description:

The doctoral programme is a journey of identity formation and self-knowledge. This compulsory but non-credit bearing module explores and facilitates questions of growth and development as engaged scholars during the DBA.

Through a process of self-awareness and reflection, participants are invited to engage in guided dialogue (intrapersonal and inter-personal) that informs their personal and professional development. The module culminates in a Personal Action Research Project (PARP) in which candidates collect data and reflect on either competency in research, teaching or consulting, or an aspect of identity formation as an Engaged Scholar.


The overall aims are to:

• Develop enhanced self-awareness, critical self-reflection, a commitment and capability for both collaborative and independent continuous learning, and relevant personal development;

• encourage reflective thought in relation to theory and practice in order to contribute to a community of practice in the development of knowledge.


Intended learning outcomes:

• facilitate the process of on-going development during the programme and beyond using an assortment of relevant techniques for gathering and analysing personal data;

• understand the significance of tensions experienced in the development of scholarship, research and management consultancy skills alongside existing practice;

• Build on self-awareness regarding approaches to learning, research paradigms, attitudes to knowledge production and ontological and epistemological world views.

Assessable learning outcomes:

  • Formative exercises in reflective thinking in workshop activities and online journaling;

  • Summative assessment of a personal action research project.

Additional outcomes:

Outline content:

The core concept informing the personal development module is awareness, which is examined over two workshops grounded in experiential concepts, frameworks, models and theories that evoke the practitioner-doctoral journey, in particular:


Life-span development (Sugarman, 2001) and life-story narrative (McAdams, 1997)

The Reflective Practitioner (Schön 1983)

Action Research (McNiff 1988, Pedler 2011)


The face-to-face sessions are linked by tutor-monitored online journaling and group discussions. Programme members are expected to undertake guided self-study, including set readings and tutor-monitored learning journal entries.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:

PD Workshop 1 takes place in the Introduction to Academic Research workshop (normally held at Greenlands) at the start of the programme. This opening workshop, two half-days, is informed by life-span development and explores the themes of Ignorance and Insecurity. The session focuses on:


  1. attuning to being at Henley and with the other people on the course, as well as Henley staff and faculty

  2. sharing, in confidence, our stories with one another and establishing what has brought you to the programme

  3. preparing for the reflective journaling tasks


PD Workshop 2, half-day, takes place during the mandatory Qualitative Research Techniques workshop, and is informed by two themes, Interaction and Interdependence. The session focuses on:


  1. activities to bring to the surface hidden assumptions of change and learning that may be present in the liminal zone of change in identity and individual reflections from or about the journaling exercise

  2. paradoxes in the practitioner academic divide

  3. preliminary ideas for a personal action research project for relevant teaching, personal or consultancy development on the DBA

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Supervised time in studio/workshop 6 4
Guided independent study:      
    Wider reading (independent) 2 2 2
    Wider reading (directed) 8 8 8
    Advance preparation for classes 2
    Completion of formative assessment tasks 10
    Reflection 18 18 12
Total hours by term 36 28 36
Total hours for module 100

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Project output other than dissertation 100

Summative assessment- Examinations:

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:

Personal Action Research Project report, submitted around the time of Confirmation of Registration

Formative assessment methods:

Completion of responses to online Learning Journal tasks, posted by PD Tutors – completed at end of Summer term.

Penalties for late submission:

Personal Development is assessed by the Tutor and is a proceed/revise assessment, therefore no penalties will apply.

Assessment requirements for a pass:

For the Personal Action Research Project, as stated in the assignment brief

Reassessment arrangements:

PD may be resubmitted more than once.

Additional Costs (specified where applicable):

Last updated: 22 June 2021


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